c. 1500, "to besiege" (a sense now obsolete), from Latin obsessus, past participle of obsidere "watch closely; besiege, occupy; stay, remain, abide" literally "sit opposite to," from ob "against" (see ob-) + sedere "to sit," from PIE root *sed- (1) "to sit." Of evil spirits, "to haunt," from 1530s. The psychological senseof "to haunt as a fixed idea" developed gradually from 1880s and emerged 20c. The 1895 Century Dictionary has only the two senses "to besiege" (marked obsolete) and "to attack, vex, or plague from without." Related: Obsessed; obsessing.
"excite, disturb, vex, annoy," 1825, American English spelling alteration to reflect a dialectal pronunciation of roil (q.v.) in a figurative sense. Compare heist from hoist and in the same era spile for spoil (v.). Bartlett writes that in both England and America roil "is now commonly pronounced and written rile" ["Dictionary of Americanisms," 1848]. With up by 1844. In the sense of "make (liquid) thick or turbid by stirring up," by 1838. Related: Riled; riling.
1540s (implied in disliking), "be displeased with, regard with some aversion or displeasure," a hybrid which ousted native mislike as the opposite of like (v.). In common with disgust, it sometimes reversed the direction of its action and meant (in this case) "annoy, vex, displease" (1570s), but this sense is archaic or obsolete. Related: Disliked; disliking. The noun sense of "feeling of being displeased" is from 1590s. English in 16c. also had dislove "hate, cease to love," but it did not survive.
early 14c., ruffelen, "to disturb the smoothness or order of," a word of obscure origin. Similar forms are found in Scandinavian (such as Old Norse hrufla "to scratch") and Low German (ruffelen "to wrinkle, curl;" Middle Low German ruffen "to fornicate"), but the exact relation and origin of them is uncertain. Also compare Middle English ruffelen "be at odds with, quarrel, dispute."
The meaning "disarrange" (hair or feathers) is recorded from late 15c.; the sense of "annoy, vex, distract" is from 1650s. Related: Ruffled; ruffling.
Proto-Indo-European root meaning "tight, painfully constricted, painful."
It is the hypothetical source of/evidence for its existence is provided by: Sanskrit amhu- "narrow," amhah "anguish;" Armenian anjuk "narrow;" Lithuanian ankštas "narrow;" Greek ankhein "to squeeze," ankhone "a strangling;" Latin angere "to throttle, torment;" Old Irish cum-ang "straitness, want;" Old English enge "narrow, painful," Old Norse angra "to grieve, vex, distress," Gothic aggwus "narrow."
late 14c., mortifien, "to kill, destroy the life of," from Old French mortefiier "destroy, overwhelm, punish," from Late Latin mortificare "cause death, kill, put to death," literally "make dead," from mortificus "producing death," from Latin mors (genitive mortis) "death" (from PIE root *mer- "to rub away, harm," also "to die" and forming words referring to death and to beings subject to death) + combining form of facere "to make, to do" (from PIE root *dhe- "to set, put").
Religious sense of "subdue the flesh by abstinence and discipline" is attested from early 15c. Sense of "humiliate, chagrin, vex" is recorded by 1690s (compare mortification). Related: Mortified; mortifying.
The original sense is of running thorns through wool or flax to separate, shred, or card the fibers. The figurative sense of "vex, worry, annoy" (sometimes done in good humor) emerged 1610s. For similar sense development, compare heckle. Hairdressing sense is recorded from 1957. Related: Teased; teasing; teasingly.
late 14c., poinaunt, "painful to physical or mental feeling" (of sauce, spice, wine as well as things that affect the feelings), from Old French poignant "sharp, pointed" (13c.), present participle of poindre "to prick, sting," from Latin pungere "to prick, pierce, sting," figuratively, "to vex, grieve, trouble, afflict" (from suffixed form of PIE root *peuk- "to prick"). Related: Poignantly.
The sense of "sharp to the taste" is now obsolete. The word contains an etymological double-reverse. Latin pungere is from the same root as Latin pugnus "fist," and represents a Latin metathesis of -n- and -g- that was reversed in French.